Experts offer runners advice on pre-marathon health - WSMV Channel 4

Experts offer runners advice on pre-marathon health

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

Marathon runners of all ages are set to participate in the St. Jude Country Music Marathon, and health experts are offering advice on what they should do to prepare in the hours leading up to the race.

John Badal is ready to compete in his third full marathon, and he already has a routine for the night before the race.

"I don't fill up on a whole bunch of food," Badal said.

Running expert John Bingham said that is probably a good strategy for a successful race, adding that while many people thinking loading up on carbs - like pasta - is a must, it's not always the case.

"With sports drinks and gels available on the course, you don't need to carb up. You do need to monitor how you feel. If you get hungry, eat. Thirsty? Drink something," Bingham said. "That's what has changed. There's no fast rule for you or me. Everyone should monitor themselves."

The same rules apply on race day itself.

Bingham said runners may want to cut back on their morning coffee intake, but in general, he said they should stick to roughly the same breakfast routine so they don't confuse their body.

Perhaps the biggest piece of advice is to stay properly hydrated.

"You don't want to be underhydrated and don't want to be overhydrated. Sometimes it's confusing - especially on a wet, rainy day when you may think you're not sweating as much," Bingham said.

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